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Home / Haryana / Manohar Khattar to be sworn in for second term today

Manohar Khattar to be sworn in for second term today

Haryana governor Satyadeo Narain Arya invited Khattar to form the government when the latter met him to stake his claim with the backing of 40 BJP and 10 JJP legislators as well as seven independent MLAs, meaning that he has the support of 57 members in a House of 90.

haryana Updated: Oct 27, 2019, 00:21 IST
HT Correspondents
HT Correspondents
New Delhi/Mumbai, Hindustan Times
(L-R) Haryana governor Satyadeo Narain Arya, chief minister-designate Manohar Lal Khattar, JJP chief Dushyant Chautala at the Raj Bhawan in Chandigarh on Saturday.
(L-R) Haryana governor Satyadeo Narain Arya, chief minister-designate Manohar Lal Khattar, JJP chief Dushyant Chautala at the Raj Bhawan in Chandigarh on Saturday.(PTI Photo)

Manohar Lal Khattar is set to be sworn in for a second term as chief minister of Haryana on Sunday, this time as the head of a coalition government between his Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the fledgling Jannayak Janta Party (JJP) of Dushyant Chautala, but efforts at cabinet formation look likely to drag on beyond Diwali in Maharashtra, where BJP ally Shiv Sena was still playing hardball.

Haryana governor Satyadeo Narain Arya invited Khattar to form the government when the latter met him to stake his claim with the backing of 40 BJP and 10 JJP legislators as well as seven independent MLAs, meaning that he has the support of 57 members in a House of 90.

“We have staked our claim. Governor has accepted our proposal and invited us. I have tendered my resignation, which has been accepted. Tomorrow at 2:15pm, oath taking ceremony will be held at Raj Bhavan. Dushyant Chautala will take oath as Deputy CM,” Khattar said.

Late on Friday, Chautala, 31, and BJP leaders including party president Amit Shah, working president JP Nadda and Khattar announced a power-sharing agreement to ensure a stable government after the October 21 assembly elections produced a hung assembly in which the BJP stopped six seats short of the halfway mark, forcing it to reach out to potential allies. The Congress performed better than expected with 31 seats, compared with the 15 it won in 2014.

“We will support whichever party agrees to implement our agenda as part of a common minimum programme. The JJP will ally with any party that promises 75% reservation of jobs for Haryanvis in Haryana and continues with pension for senior citizens,” Chautala, the great grandson of late deputy prime minister Devi Lal, a Jat leader whose legacy he claims to have inherited, said.

BJP working president JP Nadda, Union ministers and chief ministers of BJP-ruled states, including Uttar Pradesh CM Yogi Adityanath, Uttarakhand CM Trivendra Singh Rawat and Himachal Pradesh CM Jai Ram Thakur, are likely to attend the swearing-in ceremony in Chandigarh, party leaders told news agency PTI.

Government formation in Haryana seemed a cakewalk for the BJP compared to the struggle it confronted in Maharashtra, where the Shiv Sena on Saturday said it wanted a written assurance from its ally of an “equal formula for sharing of power” before it joins talks on cabinet formation.

Newly elected Sena MLAs who met party chief Uddhav Thackeray at his residence in Mumbai demanded that his son Aaditya Thackeray be made the next chief minister, Press Trust of India reported, citing a legislator. Thackeray said at the meeting that had “other options open” but was not interested in exploring them given that the BJP and Sena are bound by a Hindutva ideology, the legislator said.

Aaditya, 29, became the first Thackeray since the party was founded in the 1960s to enter the poll fray and win. He won the Worli seat in Mumbai, a Sena pocketborough. A poster supporting Aaditya Thackeray for the post of chief minister appeared outside Matoshree, the Bandra residence of the family. “Chief Minister of Maharashtra only Aaditya Thackeray,” said the slogan on the poster. Uddhav Thackeray had indicated on Thursday that the BJP didn’t have an automatic claim to the CM’s position.

The Sena wants the chief minister’s post to be rotated between the BJP and itself, and an equal number of cabinet berths.

“The Shiv Sena contested less number of seats in the Lok Sabha and assembly polls {than the BJP}. Uddhav Thackeray said the BJP should give a written assurance about implementing the power-sharing formula arrived at in the presence of Amit Shah and chief minister Devendra Fadnavis at my {Thackeray’s} residence about equal sharing of seats and power,” Sena MLA Pratap Sarnaik quoted Thackeray as saying at the meeting.

Discussions on the formation of the next government can take place after the BJP produces such an assurance, Sarnaik said.

Union minister and senior BJP leader Raosaheb Danve told reporters that his party wasn’t aware of any equal power sharing deal being proposed by the Sena. “After Diwali, CM Devendra Fadnavis will discuss the issue of formation of government with Uddhavji,” he said.

The Maharashtra BJP has convened a meeting of its newly-elected MLAs on October 30 to elect the leader of the House, state unit chief Chandrakant Patil told the Press Trust of India on Saturday. Patil said the meeting will be held in Vidhan Bhavan at 1pm.

(With inputs from agencies)

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